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Microsoft touted their July showcase as the most “creatively diverse games line up in console history”. So I thought I might break down what they could mean by that statement, and ask myself what that diversity looks like for Xbox.

Before we get into this, here’s how I approached this task: I decided to watch the conference again and took notes on things like genre, whether characters presented as male or female, and whether main characters presented as white, or as a person of color. …

As Head of Design at Visible, it’s important for me to always be investing in process and organization for our design team, and similarly to most places, change is made harder when you’re “building the tracks, while running the train” in a fast-paced company. So, when our Head of Product asked me to put together a guide for how I see roles and career growth on my team, and shared with me this wonderful articleby Helena Seo for the Door Dash team, I thought I’d spend some time going through the exercise of outlining my expectations of the various levels of individual contributor roles that I’ve traveled throughout the years. …

TL:DR: Deliver on user needs, with Unsplash quality and style.

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A couple of months ago, as I was working through designs for an Unsplash integration for my company’s product, I decided that I wanted to present our customers — Waymark helps people, make DIY commercials for the small businesses and organizations — with curated collections of images that would give them a jump start for their videos. So, I went about searching the site for images and collections to test the results of different terms.

It wasn’t long after punching in some basic terms for me to stumble upon strange gaps in Unsplash’s library of images. For example, I simply searched for “Lego”, assuming I’d have my pick of shots of bricks — but the results didn’t match my expectations. I was sifting through beautiful shots of characters protected by copyright, artistic portrait shots with bokeh backgrounds, and straight-up photos that did not contain a single lego brick. …

On a subreddit I visit, a mod posted an open question to the community asking about what system people use to organize their local design files. I decided to jump in and answer the question, but it also inspired me to make sure I’m sharing it with the world here too.

I know it can be a dry topic, but digital tidiness is important, especially in a team environment. File management is a small part of my job that I’ve really come to enjoy over my career, and while I was at Apple, I picked up some great habits that informed how I organize things, and I’ve been using a similar systems for years since that serves me fairly well, it’s kind of my own personal Mari Kondo-esq approach to managing a file system, especially in conjunction with a cloud syncing service like Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud Drive, or Box. …

TL;DR: Design representation in leadership, consideration as a stakeholder in projects, team processes, and design team feedback.

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A quick gut-check for companies, and potential employees.

Over the past dozen years, or so tech companies started touting in interviews and jobs postings about how “design-driven” they are, and how they deeply value design. It’s a compelling thought for designers — getting to work at a place where design is at or near the top of the totem pole — and makes for very effective recruiting for the creative people who are idealistic, or who have experienced teams that don’t especially value their work. …

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I often find myself lamenting at some point in a project the gap between what the original concept or vision for a thing, and the compromises and tradeoffs that that resulted in the edited down version of that said concept.

Recently, I stumbled upon something that made me examine this feeling a little closer, and it’s no surprise that it came from a video game. The traditional model of game development is a waterfall process that often involves the team having to make decisions to cut features and compromise based on deadlines, technologies, and resources.

The example was something many of you may recognize, it’s the title theme to The Legend of Zelda for the original Nintendo (Famicom in…

On March 24th 2018, families across America took part in March For Our Lives, a national protest of gun violence and our own country’s leaders inability or unwillingness to do anything about it. As a response to recent tragic acts of gun violence and the subsequent march, members of the US government and some media outlets have been trying to revive the tired conversation that video games are the culprit of this national crisis. …


Ryan Quintal

Designer. Strong opinions, loosely held. Cross posts from

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